Looks like a preemptive strike just days before the team was supposedly going to miss payroll and allow Major League Baseball to take over the franchise. Now that the courts are in the picture, Commissioner Bud Selig will not have that option, at least for a while. This morning's filing lists assets of as much as $1 billion and debt of as much as $500 million. Owner Frank McCourt says it's all Selig's fault - specifically, his unwillingness to sign off on the team's lucrative television contract.
"He's turned his back on the Dodgers, treated us differently, and forced us to the point we find ourselves in today," McCourt said in a statement. "I simply cannot allow the commissioner to knowingly and intentionally be in a position to expose the Dodgers to financial risk any longer. It is my hope that the Chapter 11 process will create a fair and constructive environment to get done what we couldn't achieve with the commissioner directly."
McCourt says that the Dodgers have received a commitment for $150 million in financing, which keep operations going for a while. No word on where that money is coming from. And no comment so far from MLB. By the way, there's an interesting list of creditors, ranging from Manny Ramirez and Andruw Jones (owed $21 million and $11 million respectively); Continental Airlines and Bank of America (more than $300,000 each); and the City of Los Angeles ($240,000). (Bloomberg, Dodgers press release)